Letter From The Editor – Nov/Dec 2016November 1, 2016 | By: Sean Murray
2016 didn’t produce the robots, laser beams and interplanetary colonization I jokingly predicted in the final issue of last year. Instead, the year was rife with terrestrial matters like profitability, sustainability, legal compliance and adjusted expectations. The advances made in financial technology revealed their vulnerabilities and in some cases, their mortalities. But those still standing at the end of 2016 may be better prepared for the future than when they started. Change, in whatever form it may take, can be good.
You need not look further than Mark Cerminaro, the chief revenue officer of RapidAdvance who once aspired to play football in the NFL. Change came for him in several forms, from a sports injury to a harrowing experience in the World Trade Center on 9/11. Today, he’s a major mover and shaker in alternative finance, having made it on the Commercial Finance Association’s 2016 “40 under 40” list of achievers. In this issue, you’ll learn more about Mark and his rapid advance with RapidAdvance.
Change for another fellow came at a more significant cost. In October, an MCA broker turned-debt negotiator was arrested and charged with mail fraud. It’s alleged those debts he offered to negotiate didn’t actually get negotiated and he left a trail of damaged merchants and funders in his wake as a result. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg, you’ll learn, as the scheme descended into a legal war that involved Native American tribes, fake names and phony lawyers. It’s a side of the story that even federal agents left alone.
Change was also once promised by a man known as Senator Barack Obama, many years ago. Did he accomplish it? One thing for certain is that a bigger change, a “yuuge” change even, is coming in the form of a President Donald Trump. He has pledged to repeal and replace Dodd Frank, a bold intention made by an even bolder man. Trump is the curveball that breaks predictive models, a force that could be really good or really bad. Most of the advances in fintech have only known a world in which Obama is President. Is the industry ready for Trump?
It’s difficult to project what will happen in 2017, but in this issue, funders bid adieu to 2016. See you next year.Last modified: December 28, 2016
Sean Murray is the founder of deBanked, a 10-year veteran of the merchant cash advance industry, a casual Lending Club and Prosper investor, the co-founder of Daily Funder, an alternative lending speaker, consultant, writer, and enthusiast. Connect with me on LinkedIn or follow me on twitter.